When We All Fall Asleep, Where Do We Go? was the third most-streamed album on on-demand in 2019, according to our calculations — and it seems Billie Eilish wants to finish the year out strong. On Wednesday, she dropped “Everything I Wanted,” a tribute to her brother and collaborator, Finneas — and a meditation on fame.
“No matter what happens, we always have been and will be there to make it better,” Eilish said in a statement. Finneas produced Eilish’s debut album, adding in a bevy of intriguing sound effects — from a crosswalk’s click to a clip from The Office.
The song shows a softer, sadder version of Eilish, her whisper-hum vocals subdued as she sings, “I had a dream/I got everything I wanted/Not what you think/And if I’m being honest/It might have been a nightmare.” It then delves into her feelings about being a global phenom (“If they knew what they said would go straight to my head/What would they say instead?”) as well as her love for her brother and his unending support (“If I could change the way that you see yourself/You wouldn’t wonder why/They don’t deserve you”).
Eilish released her debut album in March of 2019; at the time, Rolling Stone described Eilish as “the demon spawn of Lana Del Rey’s California dreams.” The 17-year-old also appeared on the cover of Rolling Stone this summer in the midst of a sold-out tour, waxing poetic about sleep paralysis, synesthesia and the Babadook. She was also featured in our special “Musician on Musicians” issue, in which she spoke with Green Day’s Billy Joe Armstrong.
“I’ve been surprised people like my music,” Eilish told Armstrong. “Because there’s such a world of liking nothing, music that’s not really doing anything. I remember having this conversation with my mom about ‘Bury a Friend.’ We were like, ‘Nobody’s gonna give a fuck, because the lyrics are “I want to end me.”’ And I really, honestly did not think anyone would care. That’s why this whole ride has been so weird.”
Eilish is set to embark on another sold-tour in support of When We All Fall Asleep next March.